APOD: Big Dipper, Deep Sky (2016 Jan 23)

Comments and questions about the APOD on the main view screen.
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APOD: Big Dipper, Deep Sky (2016 Jan 23)

Post by APOD Robot » Sat Jan 23, 2016 5:12 am

Image Big Dipper, Deep Sky

Explanation: The Big Dipper is an easy to recognize, well-known asterism in northern skies, though many see the Plough or Wagon. Famous bright nebulae of the north can also be found along its familiar lines, highlighted in this carefully composed scene with telescopic insets framed in the wider-field skyview. All from Messier's catalog, M101 and M51 are cosmic pinwheel and whirlpool on the left, spiral galaxies far beyond the Milky Way. To the right, M108, a distant edge-on spiral galaxy is seen close to our galaxy's own owl-faced planetary nebula M97. Taken on January 16, the wider-field view seems to include an extra star along the Dipper's handle, though. That's Comet Catalina (C/2013 US10) now sweeping through northern nights.

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Re: APOD: Big Dipper, Deep Sky (2016 Jan 23)

Post by Ann » Sat Jan 23, 2016 5:25 am

Oh, that's a superb image! I love the colors, and I love the fact that it covers so much sky and really gives us an idea of the size and location of these things on the sky! And thanks so much for the rollover effect! :D

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Re: APOD: Big Dipper, Deep Sky (2016 Jan 23)

Post by Boomer12k » Sat Jan 23, 2016 7:29 am

Totally cool...would like to see more annotated with Deep Sky Objects...

Can't see this though, we are overcast, and are most of the time here in Oregon.

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Re: APOD: Big Dipper, Deep Sky (2016 Jan 23)

Post by Buddy » Sat Jan 23, 2016 10:34 am

When I click the image then zoom in, what strikes me are how many similarly bright stars are aligned in short arcs. Is that just an optical illusion, like my brain trying to find patterns in randomness?

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Re: APOD: Big Dipper, Deep Sky (2016 Jan 23)

Post by heehaw » Sat Jan 23, 2016 10:49 am

Hey, is that star named after George Dubhe Bush?

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Re: APOD: Big Dipper, Deep Sky (2016 Jan 23)

Post by messier.palette » Sat Jan 23, 2016 11:07 am

This is such a great annotation! Like Boomer, above, I'd love to see more like this. I love the concept and implementation of this one!

M106 looks to be on here too, though I could be wrong. If you draw a vertical line on this image, almost halfway between "Phad" and "Alioth" and then look at the very, very, very bottom edge of the image (along that vertical line), the galaxy that is there (if you zoom in) might be the beautiful M106. It looks like the right shape.

What do the rest of you think? Is it the one?

M106 is one of my favorite galaxies ever since everybody started publishing the amazing combined wavelength images of it. It is astonishing.

Here is the Wikipedia page with the visible/infrared composite:

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Me ... posite.jpg

Thanks for this look at a sweet patch of sky!

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Re: APOD: Big Dipper, Deep Sky (2016 Jan 23)

Post by Ann » Sat Jan 23, 2016 11:21 am

I think you've got it, messier.palette. That does indeed seem to be M106.

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Re: APOD: Big Dipper, Deep Sky (2016 Jan 23)

Post by Ann » Sat Jan 23, 2016 12:47 pm

messier.palette wrote:This is such a great annotation! Like Boomer, above, I'd love to see more like this. I love the concept and implementation of this one!
You should check out Rogelio Bernal Andreo's ultra-deep portrait of the Big Dipper. Warning: It's a 7 MB image.

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Re: APOD: Big Dipper, Deep Sky (2016 Jan 23)

Post by messier.palette » Sat Jan 23, 2016 1:29 pm

Thanks Ann! Oh my, so lovely.

7 megs takes a big chunk out of my data plan LOL, but it was certainly worth it.

What strikes me about the image you offer, and so many others, is the loveliness of areas that aren't even significant enough to make it into my Camb.Star.Atlas. Like the area to the left of #5 and #7 in the atlas. (At least I think that's where I'm looking.) On the page, there's just a big blank area in that region, and yet zooming in on the hi-rez image in your link, there are some lovely different colored stars, in a beautiful arrangement, like stepping-stones in an arcing river. I love finding new corners of the universe and new worlds that way. Thank you so much Ann!!!

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Re: APOD: Big Dipper, Deep Sky (2016 Jan 23)

Post by zedoc » Sat Jan 23, 2016 1:53 pm

This image is very helpful. I would like to see much more like this. It shows where things are located. I would like to see the Andromeda in an image like this.

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Re: APOD: Big Dipper, Deep Sky (2016 Jan 23)

Post by bls0326 » Sat Jan 23, 2016 2:17 pm

Very helpful image to locate the comet. I should be able to find it tonite.

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Re: APOD: Big Dipper, Deep Sky (2016 Jan 23)

Post by Ann » Sat Jan 23, 2016 2:42 pm

messier.palette wrote:Thanks Ann! Oh my, so lovely.
You're very welcome! I'm glad you like it. (So do I, by the way!) :D

I have one more recommendation for you, Stanislav Volskiy's 212-hour Exposure of Orion. It was the APOD of November 23 last year. There are no galaxies in that image, or barely any galaxies, but the nebulas in the image are stunning. Absolutely fantastic!

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Re: APOD: Big Dipper, Deep Sky (2016 Jan 23)

Post by messier.palette » Sun Jan 24, 2016 12:27 am

Ooo, another lovely link Ann!!! Thanks so much :)

I've seen so many wonderful pictures of the Rosette nebula (it's one of my favs) yet I never figured out it was in the vicinity of Orion! And I knew that the Witches Head was by Rigel, but in my mind, I had it upside down to this. APOD is the best. I'm so glad I found it, and these discussion boards for it.

My favorite part of this 212-hour translation is the golden Betelgeuse. I know it will probably be awhile (maybe millions of awhiles) before it explodes, but I still check it as often as I can to make sure it is still intact :shock: I can't see much from where I am, and I have no telescope, but most times, we can at least see Orion!

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Re: APOD: Big Dipper, Deep Sky (2016 Jan 23)

Post by DavidLeodis » Sun Jan 24, 2016 12:58 pm

It's a lovely image :). I've noticed that the caption with it in an English text section of Lorand's website is "Comet Catalina blasted through the Big Dipper, In Hungarian, it is called “Göncöl’s Wagon” after a taltos in the mythology". I've found in a Wikipedia entry that it states "Táltos, in Hungarian tradition a human being similar to a shaman, or alternately the horse of such a person, called the Táltos Horse". Fascinating stuff.

PS. A comet smilie in the current extended list of smilies would be 8-).

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Re: APOD: Big Dipper, Deep Sky (2016 Jan 23)

Post by moontrail » Mon Jan 25, 2016 9:01 am

I miss it were also mentioned as Ursa Major, the Great Bear.

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Re: APOD: Big Dipper, Deep Sky (2016 Jan 23)

Post by messier.palette » Mon Jan 25, 2016 9:45 am

moontrail wrote:I miss it were also mentioned as Ursa Major, the Great Bear.
You're right, the Big Dipper is part of Ursa Major.

The handle of the Big Dipper is the tail of the Great Bear.

Amd the cup of the Big Dipper is the haunch (hip, flank) of the Great Bear.

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Re: APOD: Big Dipper, Deep Sky (2016 Jan 23)

Post by neufer » Mon Jan 25, 2016 4:15 pm

messier.palette wrote:
moontrail wrote:
I miss it were also mentioned as Ursa Major, the Great Bear.
You're right, the Big Dipper is part of Ursa Major.

The handle of the Big Dipper is the tail of the Great Bear.

And the cup of the Big Dipper is the haunch (hip, flank) of the Great Bear.
Click to play embedded YouTube video.
:arrow: And Leo Minor is the left over
remains of the Great Bear.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Leo_Minor wrote:
<<Leo Minor lies between the larger and more recognizable Ursa Major to the north and Leo to the south. Leo Minor was not regarded as a separate constellation by classical astronomers; it was designated by Johannes Hevelius in 1687. The constellation also includes two stars with planetary systems, two pairs of interacting galaxies, and the unique deep-sky object Hanny's Voorwerp.>>
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Re: APOD: Big Dipper, Deep Sky (2016 Jan 23)

Post by Chris Peterson » Mon Jan 25, 2016 4:21 pm

messier.palette wrote:You're right, the Big Dipper is part of Ursa Major.

The handle of the Big Dipper is the tail of the Great Bear.

Amd the cup of the Big Dipper is the haunch (hip, flank) of the Great Bear.
Well, maybe. Certainly, we see many modern attempts to place a bear on the asterism in this fashion. However, given that the star pattern really looks nothing like a bear, and that the association with a bear predates by millennia any description of just how those stars were supposed to represent one, who knows? It's possible that there was originally no physical mapping between the asterism and a bear at all, just some lost bit of mythology.
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Re: APOD: Big Dipper, Deep Sky (2016 Jan 23)

Post by neufer » Mon Jan 25, 2016 5:18 pm

Chris Peterson wrote:
messier.palette wrote:
The handle of the Big Dipper is the tail of the Great Bear.

Amd the cup of the Big Dipper is the haunch (hip, flank) of the Great Bear.
Well, maybe. Certainly, we see many modern attempts to place a bear on the asterism in this fashion. However, given that the star pattern really looks nothing like a bear, and that the association with a bear predates by millennia any description of just how those stars were supposed to represent one, who knows? It's possible that there was originally no physical mapping between the asterism and a bear at all, just some lost bit of mythology.
  • Azophi Fixed that:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Book_of_Fixed_Stars wrote:

:arrow: The Great Bear. The familiar seven stars of the "Big Dipper", recorded by Ptolemy, are visible in the rump and tail, but notice they occur as a mirror-image of what we actually see because Al Sufi provided two images of each constellation, one as we see it in the night sky and one as seen here on a celestial globe. The image is from the [1009 AD] copy in the Bodleian Library, the oldest copy extant.

The Book of Fixed Stars is an astronomical text written by Abd al-Rahman al-Sufi (Azophi) around 964. The book was written in Arabic, although the author himself was Persian. It was an attempt to create a synthesis of the most popular classical work of astronomy – Ptolemy’s Almagest – with the indigenous Arabic astronomical tradition, or anwa. The book was thoroughly illustrated along with observations and descriptions of the stars, their positions, their magnitudes (brightness) and their color. His results were set out constellation by constellation. For each constellation, he provided two drawings, one from the outside of a celestial globe, and the other from the inside. The work was highly influential and survives in numerous manuscripts and translations. The oldest manuscript, kept in the Bodleian Library, dates to 1009 and is the work of the author's son.>>
http://www.worldhistoryblog.com/2006/10 ... tions.html


The Origin of the Greek Constellations
Scientific American, Monday, October 30, 2006
by Bradley E. Schaefer.

<<Was the Great Bear constellation named before hunter nomads first reached the Americas more than 13,000 years ago? This article claims this may be the case as Ursa Major does not really look like a bear yet communities in Europe, Asia, and the Americas call the constellation the great bear. Hence, it is likely the constellation was named before settlers first arrived in North America. From the article:
  • My grandfather first taught me about the Great Bear constellation. After that, I had fun wielding an old pair of binoculars and picking out other constellations in the wide sky over Colorado--or even inventing my own. At the time, of course, I gave no thought to the age or origin of the constellations, but the curious pictures in the sky present a fascinating scientific puzzle.

    In 1922, when the International Astronomical Union officially defined 88 constellations, it drew the bulk of them from Ptolemy's The Almagest, which was written around A.D. 150 and described the traditions widespread among the Greeks. These traditions had been popularized in the "best-selling" poem The Phaenomena, by Aratus (275 B.C.). The great astronomer Hipparchus's sole surviving book, The Commentary (147 B.C.), tells us that Aratus's poem is for the most part a copy of a work with the same name by Eudoxus (366 B.C.), which no longer survives. These books held the earliest descriptions of the Greek skies, and in them the constellations are already fully formed. But where did the Greek constellations come from?...
Art Neuendorffer